Sunday, August 30, 2015

Home Transformations: The Townhouse Kitchen

We moved this summer.

I never could have been prepared for the stress of this ordeal, even when more experienced friends gave me that knowing oh-my-gosh-moving-is-the-worst look, piled high with sympathy, knowing full well that I was approaching the entire task with a great deal of naivety. The last time I moved was when I married my husband, with maybe two car loads of stuff. Five years and two kids does a lot to the moving process. Well, folks, it kicked my trash. Over and over and over. Months of stress resulted in a handful of ugly moments, but we have sold our townhouse, renovated our apartment (attached to our new house), and now, looking toward the fall, will finish fixing up and beautifying our new living area/yard.

So this is the first in a series of "Home Transformation" posts. We begin with the Townhouse Kitchen.
 I didn't get any pictures before we took the sink out. This transformation is very basic. We had very limited time to make-over this kitchen, so we opted for replacing the counters and adding a backsplash.
 Green counters scared away a few buyers, I'm sure.
 Bye bye green counters!

And here is where, like those annoying/addicting home remodel shows, we skip the harrowing details of the 3 day job that turned into an 8 day job, a dozen trips to Lowe's, begging and borrowing to get the material to our house, begging friends to watch my kids so I could work, hours and hours of tile cutting, grout applying,  trying to get those @#$&% counters level, frustration, melt-downs, and, eventually, real satisfaction that the thing looks super amazing.

I did the backsplash, Kyle did the counters. The counters are laminate from Lowe's, and the backsplash was a lot more fun to put in than I would have thought. I didn't even mind the tile cutting, and it made such a big improvement. It is a heartbreaker to do all this work just to pass it on to someone else and not get to enjoy it, but, the good news is that once our house went back on the market, we had an offer in two days and everything went really fast and smoothly. We loved our time in this little townhouse and are proud of the way we left it for its new owners.

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

An Announcement

I've been really dreading saying this. I've been avoiding saying it ever since the facts sank in and the decisions were made, but I suppose I can't avoid it much longer. I could just not say it and then one day just disappear, but that would probably be worse than just saying it.

My little family is moving.

Just for the record, it wasn't my idea.

We are leaving our cozy corner in Ashburn, and moving to, wait for it, waaaaaait for it....

Buena Vista, Virginia.

I know. I know! Its one of the last things I ever thought I'd say....again. (Actually, technically, this is the 5th time in my life that I'm moving back to Buena Vista, heretofore referred to as BV.) But this time, more than every other time, its kind of totally cray cray.

Let me explain.

I first moved to BV in 2001 as a freshman at Southern Virginia University. Good times, good times indeed. I came and went over the next 6 years, always getting sucked back in, but finally left for good in 2007 when I came to the DC area. In 2010 I got married and moved to Ashburn, VA with my lovely husband. Now we have two little boys and life is very, very different.

For the last few years, Kyle and I have been dreaming up goals for our little growing family. What do we want to do, where do we want to be, what does our ideal future look like? Goals are important. They are part of the faith process, a way of creating things spiritually before they appear physically. We have loved Ashburn. It is lovely, quiet, and safe. It has every feature and amenity one could reasonably want. Most of all, the people we have met and friends we have made will stick with us for the rest of our lifetime. Our church family has meant so much to us. Those who have supported and mentored us through so many huge life changes will forever have an impact on our life and our family.

I am so sad to leave my comfortable Ashburn life, and I would rather be in total denial and not press publish on this post. But, we all knew this was coming sooner or later--

We have decided to move right now for the following reasons:
1) Kyle works from home, so he can do that anywhere.
2) Living in southern Virginia on a northern Virginia paycheck will help us save a lot of mullah.
3) The home we purchased in BV has a side apartment and we will renovate the basement and rent it to students, making living there very financially smart.
4) We are excited for more of a country lifestyle, and are looking forward to all the great outdoor activities readily available in Rockbridge County.
5) I am excited to go back to my old stomping grounds and be a member of the SVU community again. Sports games, plays, cultural events, and just generally supporting the ol' Knights will be a lot of fun.
As I said before, and this can't be understated, it will be hard to leave Ashburn and this life we've loved for the last 4.5 years. I will especially miss serving as Primary President in our ward. Living farther away from Kyle's parents will be the hardest loss. Life is about progressing and becoming better, and for us, with our future goals in our sights, this move will challenge us with new opportunities to learn and change in ways that we hope will get us closer to those goals.

We plan to move at the end of May, after we do some repairs and improvements to the house in BV. Now comes the hard work of putting our house on the market, packing, etc. Which obviously no one looks forward to.

I want to express my most heart-felt gratitude and love to those who have been such a blessing to our lives these years in Ashburn, as well as our friends from our "single life"; The Soundry family and Langley Ward. I came to NoVA 7 and a half years ago alone, with no idea what life would bring. I have felt the guiding influence of God every step of the way, with every decision, every milestone, and every relationship. I have experienced miracles--like that time I just wandered into The Soundry completely randomly and it changed my life, or the time a tall blonde nerd continued to talk to me after I blew him off and ended up being my everything, or the time my life and my child's life were spared because of modern medicine. The list goes on and on.

We are excited for a new chapter, and look forward to reconnecting with old friends and making new ones. Here's to slow sunsets, blue ridge mountains, Appalachian Trails, floating rivers on a hot summer day, hiking trails and mountains minutes from our front door, no traffic, the scent of honeysuckle and rain, and southern accents. In a way, for me, its kind of like going home.